Help Us Honor our Chishti Ancestors

The chain of transmission of the Inayatiyya encompasses the teachings and lineages of four great Sufi orders; the Chishti, Suhrawardi, Qadiri, and Naqshbandi. The Chishti Order was founded in Afghanistan and later spread to the Indian subcontinent. In 1910 Ḥazrat Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan was the first Chishti teacher to arrive in the West. In the last century, the Chistiyya has blossomed with teachers now in Europe, North America, Australia, and Eastern and Southern Africa.

Since last August when the Taliban entered Kabul after seizing the rest of the country, the United States has welcomed over 74,000 Afghans forced to flee their homeland. Some members of our Inayatiyya family are helping Afghan refugees in their local communities. Tens of thousands more remain in Afghanistan, struggling to survive and feed themselves under extremely difficult conditions.

The Taliban has been hunting down and punishing their former enemies leading to a general sense of insecurity and political instability. Their economy is in freefall with massive unemployment. Government services have virtually collapsed due to an inadequate budget to pay employee salaries. The entire country has been subjected to a catastrophic drought for the last three years resulting in widespread famine.

We are fortunate to have in our Inayatiyya family a murid, Qutbuddin Don Meier, who has a long association with Afghanistan. He first visited the country in 1968 while on leave from Peace Corps Iran. Subsequently, he worked in Kabul in the late 1970s, manufacturing clothing for export. After 9/11 he returned to Kabul to work on humanitarian and development assistance for USAID as well as various NGOs and institutional contractors through 2009. He still maintains connections with friends and colleagues there.

Qutbuddin has developed a way to provide immediate assistance for some of the most destitute people of Herat, a province in the western part of the country near the Iran border.

With the assistance of a trustworthy Afghan colleague, they have been able to distribute emergency packages to families that include not only basic food items such as rice, cooking oil, beans and lentils, but also essential hygiene supplies. The candidates are screened with the assistance of local elders giving preference to widows, disabled persons and households without a full-time breadwinner. The supplies provided last up to two months, depending on the family size.

After an initial contribution of $1000 to test the feasibility of this transfer mechanism, 20 families were supported, proving its viability. This is largely a volunteer effort with minimal operational expenses ensuring maximum assistance to the beneficiaries.

Please make a generous donation today to support those still living in Afghanistan via the GoFundMe Herat Aid page. Because this not a registered non-profit, donations are not eligible for tax deductions. Let us honor our Chishti heritage by caring for descendants in Afghanistan today.

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